The Bartholomew County Public Library hopes to alleviate the winter blues with a month-long focus on hobbies.

National Hobby Month at the library will feature programs about radio-controlled airplanes, remote control cars and genealogy, said Mary Clare Speckner, library community services coordinator.

Members from the Bartholomew County R/C Fliers will discuss the hobby of radio-controlled airplanes beginning at 1 p.m. Jan. 20, while the co-owner of Fast 5 RC Raceway, Joe Chambers, will talk about racing hobby-grade remote control cars at 2 p.m. that day.

Interest in the remote control cars is growing, Chambers said. He became involved in the hobby two decades ago.

Fast 5 RC Raceway, located off Indianapolis Road, continues to be a popular destination for racing enthusiasts, he said.

“We get kids that are 3 years old, 6 years old … and it’s all skill and age ranges,” Chambers said. “Depending on what your wants and needs are, you can have a lot of fun with it.”

Chambers will bring some remote control cars and trucks to demonstrate and provide information about how much someone would have to invest to get started in the hobby. A basic remote control vehicle would start at about $160, he said.

Hobby-grade cars which are available at specialty shops typically last longer than those purchased at retail stores and may be customized to the owner’s specifications, he said.

“You not only become a driver, but become a mechanic,” Chambers said.

For those who want to steer their hobby interests into exploring their family’s roots, the library will have a genealogy discussion Jan. 25 with library genealogist Annette Blount. Blount will lead a two-hour workshop beginning at 2 p.m. to help people fill in a five-generation ancestry chart, Speckner said.

Resources such as online databases and other reference materials such as birth and marriage records available through the library will be explained, Speckner said.

“It’s still a quest,” Speckner said. “People want to know where they come from.”

Speckner said the variety of programs being offered this month should appeal to different age groups.

“I think getting the younger kids into things like this will be fun,” she said.

The programs are open to all age groups and skill levels, Speckner said.

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Matt Kent is a reporter for The Republic. He can be reached at 812-379-5712 or